Jan 8, 2008

Media Feedback

I guess someone did an article with the Minneapolis Star Tribune that came out today. I'm getting lots of emails about tangential aspects of the Compact.

First, I didn't do that article so I'm not sure how botox and viagra came up (pardon the pun). But regarding botox, I don't even like the idea of buying makeup (I don't personally, ever), so I'll never be down with botox. Getting products, which is exactly what botox and viagra are, to market requires tons of testing. It's super consumptive and most imporyantly to me, it involves harming loads of animals. Not a single human's crow's feet are worth the suffering of a mouse, rabbit, dog, or monkey. Regarding viagra, erectile dysfunction doesn't really apply to me. I'm a mostly queer girl in her twenties. Maybe I'll care some day, but I don't right now.

In general, our society is way over medicated. I don't support that and would point to other societies who live without botox and viagra. It's not like we're suffering a population decline because of erectile dysfunction or crow's feet.

And for pajamas for kids, I don't have kids. That wasn't my exception. But it gets to the heart of the Compact: This is a highly individual challenge. We didn't initiate it to attract adherents but that's what happened. Take our experiences and make them relevant to your life. You know your own threshold. If new shoes (sweatshop free and vegan to keep it real) make life with other used items more palatable, then get them.

The Compact is a non-hierarchical association of folks concerned about over-consumption. We never try to dictate your motivations or your actions. We share our own experiences to encourage folks to consider alternatives to consumer and corporate culture. I'm stoked that so many folks can relate to us and our challenge. But don't be deterred if you don't agree with everything that you read about us.


mdp from MN said...

Well the botox and viagra and the pajamas for kids are a part of the first blog that was ever posted on this blog.

Cimendef said...

Hi Rachel,

I'm living in Réunion island (a french island in the indian ocean) and i wanted to tell you that this compact stuff is a good thing. In fact we don't need all these goods. i hope people in rich countries will understand this as soon as possible (because the planet will never sustain this a long time). i still believe that we can change things all together, i try to wake up people with some artists friends in acting in the street, on a beach, up a hill, everywhere it's possible by doing some "land art" , in fact we created a new art movement called "Maroon Art". if we all do this kind of stuff we will awake the world. Happy new year. CIMENDEF www.art-marron.com

Angela said...

I live in the Twin Cities and I saw the article in yesterday's Minneapolis Star-Tribune (www.startribune.com). I already live a frugal, second-hand lifestyle to the nth degree, but it was an interesting read.

The "exceptions" to the "don't buy anything new" were underwear, socks, kid's pajamas (for flame retardant features), and then they threw in goofy stuff like cosmetic procedures, etc. But they also said underwear has to be "utilitarian." Um, sorry, but almost all my clothes are second hand, so I'm going to continue to enjoy my Victoria's Secret undies!

My attitude is this: If we ALL did as much as we possibly can to reduce, reuse, recycle (sorry for the cliche, but it's there), then our planet could better tolerate the occasional indulgences we all enjoy now and then. So I buy 95% of my clothing second hand, but when I see an awesome new top every six months, I'll buy it guilt-free.

It helps to be in a circle of friends with the same attitude. My friend's son turned 3 and most of his gifts were second-hand -- cleaned up toys that still have a light of life left in them.

Good website -- I've read a little, and I look forward to reading more when I have a little more time.

Angela said...

Follow up to my comment yesterday: I like to describe frugality this way: It's not about deprivation. It's about determining what your priorities are, when taking into consideration one's pocketbook, one's community, one's health, and one's planet.

inforum intern said...

i can't wait to hear you guys speak on this tuesday. all things aside, i'm generally interested in The Compact and what you guys have to say.

rachel said...

mdp: oh, yeah! god, that was all written sooooo long ago. maybe the article just copied that text. none of us has seen the article because you have to subscribe.

cimendef: so cool to hear from you. that site is awesome, nice work. i love situational pieces like you're showing. amazing!

angela: you totally describe the way i feel when you say that indulgences are ok as long as we're doing our best in most things. for some folks the indulgence is underwear, for some it's footwear. some folks

Ellen said...

Just wanted to let you know how I'm imlementing the Compact. I'm a SAHM of 2 little girls and live outside Washington, D.C. I've only become uber-environmentally aware in the past few years and am continually pleasantly surprised at how little trouble it is to do little things to help - and all the little things add up. I'm also a somewhat faithful Catholic and so for Lent, I'm observing the compact for myself and my kids. My exception will be new underwear for all and, you guessed it, new pajamas for the kids. I've shopped at a thrift store regularly for all of us for the past couple years but my Lenten sacrifice is to really, really rachet it up a notch and not buy anything new until Easter. I haven't read through all the posts yet but I'm hoping to see some inspiration in how I can be more sustainable with my husband's wardrobe. He's got a professional job and he needs to look business like. I most often wind up buying new for him because stuff from the thrift store in men's suits is rarely in good enough condition.

Anyway, thanks for inspiring. I'll hopefully be blogging about this at http://thriftstoremama.blogspot.com/